Amaryllis plants are ubiquitous during the winter holidays because it’s easy to force the bulbs to produce their huge red flowers indoors. Our neighbor Jim gave us an amaryllis as a Christmas gift in 2007. He told us that after it was finished blooming indoors, we could plant the bulb outside in early spring. We did and promptly forgot about it. Much to our surprise, the following spring — 2009 — it bloomed. And now it’s blooming again and it’s even bigger than it was last spring.
The really great thing about this plant is that everyone is used to seeing these amaryllis flowers indoors, in a pot, at Christmas time. So now our amaryllis is a conversation piece with our neighbors. Several people have stopped to ask us if that’s really an amaryllis, outside, blooming in May.
So the next time someone gives you an amaryllis during the holidays, don’t throw it out after it has finished blooming. Instead, start thinking about where in your yard you can plant it in the spring. You’ll finally have something to talk about with your neighbors.